Why is Scout the narrator in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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Scout is the narrator for several reasons. First, Scout has a child's innocent perspective. More than the adults in her life, she sees people as people, not as "black" or "white." She is not invested in maintaining the social hierarchy. Therefore, in her naive telling, she is able to expose the racism of Maycomb without having to justify it or rationalize it. It is simply wrong to condemn an innocent man for rape because he happens to be black, and through Scout's eyes that moral point of view stands out all the more sharply.

Second, the book is also about how a child is formed through the example of a parent. Scout and Jem (and the reader) learn valuable life lessons because Atticus is such a wise and exemplary human being. They learn to be tolerant and even empathize with nasty people like Mrs. Dubose; they learn to be modest about innate talents, such as Atticus is about being a sharpshooter; and they learn that it is important to do the right thing, even if public opinion turns against...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 669 words.)

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